New Independence Academy (NIA) uses an educational model designed to be compatible with the unique learning styles of children diagnosed with Asperger's Syndrome - a form of High Functioning Autism (HFA) or other pervasive developmental disorders (PDD). As these children often possess advanced abilities with computers and electronic media, the NIA model combines a digital subject curriculum with a carefully maintained learning environment including frequent breaks, natural lighting and quiet classrooms. As these children attempt to absorb as much information as possible from their environment, it is important to minimize all stimuli competing for the student's attention. The primary advantage of the digital curriculum is it allows each child to advance at his/her own pace and allows the teacher to spend most of their time with individualized instruction while the rest of the class continues with their work uninterrupted.
NIA also recognizes the importance of learning the life skills necessary to survive and thrive in society, so those skills are integrated throughout the school day and/or school year. Outside of the classroom, other structured experiences are conducted that instill both a sense of calm and spark the imagination, both key ingredients for a successful educational strategy for Asperger's/ HFA/ PDD children.
Go North on William St. from the Chamber office. Turn left onto Grantham St. and merge onto US 70 West. Travel approximately 2 miles and turn left onto O'Berry Center Rd.